Taras Shevchenko. Liberty trees cut down.
[1842, not later than September. St. Petersburg].
Reproduced by polytypage. 8,2 × 6,3 cm
Reproduced on page 257 of the book "History of Suvorov".
Figure Shevchenko, which produced prints, dating approximately August – September 1842.
Illustration to text on page 257 of book, which described the completion of Suvorov's Italian campaign in 1799: taking Rome, siege castles, the destruction of the Roman and Partenopea republics, and cutting liberty trees, landed in Italy to mark the establishment of the republic. Trees of liberties (they also called trees of brotherhood) descended from common in many European nations custom to meet the arrival of spring and major holidays planting trees. Flowery tops of trees, covered with red Phrygian caps, acquired symbolic meaning. The first tree is planted in Paris, and during the French Revolution planted them almost the entire territory of France. Subsequently, by order of government, these trees were cut down. The same fate befell them in Italy, which is shown in the engraving.
Shevchenko's authorship confirmed by common figures in the image and some details of this artwork with others, signed illustrations and other drawings of the artist. Thus, the figure of a Cossack with an ax close to outline the farmer on the margins of the letter Shevchenko to his brother Nikita on March 2, 1840 and drawings "Powwow". Picture of a soldier, including his clothes and shoes, has something in common with other signed Shevchenko's illustrations for this book and pencil outline. In addition, the engraving clearly noticeable features in Shevchenko's manner depiction of trees.
July 27, 1843 it was announced in the press that the third issue of "History of Suvorov" sent to subscribers [Northern Bee. – 1843. – 27 July], where the artwork was reproduces for the first time.
First attributed as a work of Shevchenko called "Cutting down of trees of liberties" by L. Zinchuk [Zinchuk L. D. Artistic Shevchenkiana replenished // In the annals of respect and love. – K., 1989. – p. 106; reprod. between the p. 200 – 201].
After publication: T.H. Shevchenko Complete Works in 12 volumes. – K.: Naukova Dumka, 2003, v. 7, p. 156 – 157 (image), p. 410 – 411 (note).